Wednesday 9 September 2015

First fortnight in Japan.

After missing out C88, I finally arrived at Japan. I rented a 21m square apartment in Minowa, a few station away from Akibahara station, top of Iriya and Ueno. The renting price is 60,000 yen per month with water bill included. The bad new is I am sick before I came over, this made everything extra hard at the very beginning, but after getting some very effective medicine from Pharmacist next door, I am almost recovered to perfect condition.

Water/Electricity and Gas connection is actually pretty easy, all I needed to do is call their office and they would provide a call back with English speaking staff. However the hard part is internet, I have applied internet though it is an easy to use 3rd party agency specialize on connection internet for foreigners. The person who taking charge is called Jimmie, he is very helpful and provides help where ever he can. He checked tconnection my place have and suggest me to use for ISP. However even with all the help I can get, it still took 2 weeks for the internet to be actually connected. Mostly due to slow processing time and the fact I need to wait for my ID and Password to be physically mailed to my mail box. Their customer service staff have no access to any of my connecting information. My neighbor living in 201 tried to apply for internet service as well, however he had no luck due to he doesn't have a foreign credit card. And yes it have to be a credit card not a debit card. they told me they have already send the files to ISP, but it might take more than a week for the connection to be established.

Regards mobile service and mobile net. I purchased a prepaid sim card from So-net at B1 Narita airport, the connection it self is pretty stable but the price is slightly higher than other offering. I was going to switch to Bmobile since I heard lots of good words regards the service from internet, however friend told me their connection is really bad. Later on I found out offers mobile sim too, however their service actually requires a contract and foreign credit card to be recorded. But the pricing is way better than any of the prepaid service. It is ¥1000 per month for 3gb of LTE network, it takes a little bit of time(under a week) again for them to send the sim card and my ID/PW however the connection is stable and generally worth the wait.

For phone calls, I purchased a Japanese number from Skype, so I am able to receive phone calls in case of emergency. As for calling, the first month of Skype credit is free, overall speaking this should save some money.

For furniture and electronic appliance, I purchased all my furniture so far from Nitori. Nitori is like A Japan version of Ikea, except it’s even cheaper. Although most furniture requires some sort of Assembly, the whole process is very simple. They offer free delivery service for any purchase more than 7000 yen. For fridge and washing machine, I have followed my agency’s suggestion of purchasing 2nd hand appliance from removal service. Both the fridge and washing machine is only 2 or 3 years old, both under mint condition. In total I paid 30,800 yen for both appliance plus delivery and installation.

The hardest part is banking, as my friend suggested, I tried to open a bank service in Japan Post bank. Everything went smoothly at the beginning, however I lack of the invoice/salary document to open a debit account. After failing to receive Invoice/Salary paper from my employer since I am a contracted Artist not a full time employee, I decided to go to Japan post again the next day, however with different staff at counter, they turned me down, refused to open a bank account with me since my Japanese language skill isn't good enough. They asked me to go to Ueno office instead, since there's might be English service there. I went to the Ueno office, and they turn me down again. So after some research I found out about Shinsei bank, and I am currently trying that one out.

Also I have purchased a hanko with my initial from a hanko store in Akiba. Although most places takes signature, apparently Bank isn't one of such places, The hanko it self cost me 6000 yen, so I better make sure I take a good use out of it XD.

Hopefully my jobs for this month is coming in soon, time to work hard again.

Finally here's a picture of the 27inch monitor I bought from Akiba, it is a display copy but only cost 11000 yen!